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tv   Tonight From Washington  CSPAN  December 15, 2010 8:00pm-11:00pm EST

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text before it came to the floor, but they were not accepted. instead of the $67 million in outlays over the next five years, in the senate text before us, the provisions of that bill would have resulted in less than $1 million in potential costs. the republican alternative proposed the following. first, we make it clear that child marriage is a violation of human rights and that its prevention should be a goal of u.s. foreign policy. second, since there is no legislative requirement for a u.s. strategy for assistance to prevent child marriage, we require the creation of such a multi year strategy. third, we require a report within one year that would inform us on the progress of the required strategy and perhaps more important, give us a comprehensive assessment of what we already are doing in funding in the effort to fight child marriage. and finally, that practice of
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child marriage in other countries be reported each year as part of the annual human rights report and that the practice of child marriage also be reported for those countries that are potential recipients of u.s. security assistance. i believe the alternative approach that was proposed would have achieved the goals we desire without adding to our economic burdens. regrettably, we are faced with s. 987 and its price tag of $67 million. mr. speaker, having outlined my concerns with the bill before us today, i ask my colleagues to vote no on this bill. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. berman: i assume the gentleman from indiana has no further speakers. mr. burton: i have no further speakers, but i'll add one more comment if i may, and that is, make no mistake -- mr. berman: i yield to the the
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gentleman from from indiana. mr. burton: i have not yielded back. i will be happy to use your time. mr. berman: and i yielded such time as he consumes up to a point. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields his time to the the gentleman from indiana. mr. berman: everything except one minute. mr. burton: i won't take the full minute. let me just say i don't want anyone to think we aren't very sympathetic to the problem, we are. but the fiscal problems we face in this country right now are of paramount concern to all of us and for that reason, we must bring this to a vote. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. berman: i yield myself such time as i may consume and i do it in the context of urging my colleagues to vote for this legislation to point out that number one, this is not an
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entitlement program. it is an authorization. it is not an appropriation. to the extent that we pass this legislation and signed into law, that the statement takes its appropriated resources and uses some of those resources to develop this strategic plan to work with these organizations for what the gentleman himself concedes is a very important cause. those resources will come from some other form of resources and will not be additional spending unless there is an appropriation and this bill is an appropriations bill but an authorization bill. i urge my colleagues to support it. it's a critical issue. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: i yielded back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana has yielded back. all time having expired, will
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the house suspend the rules and pass senate 987. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the bill is passed and the motion to reconsider is -- the gentleman from indiana. mr. burton: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking the vote please rise and remain standing until counted. further proceedings on this question will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. berman: i move to suspend the rules and agree to the resolution h. res. 20 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of
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the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 20, resolution calling on the state department to list the socialist republic of vietnam as a country of particular concern with respect to religious freedom. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from california, mr. berman, and the gentleman from indiana plrks burton, will each -- mr. burton, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. berman: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. berman: i rise in support of this resolution and yield myself such time as i may consume. this resolution calls on the state department to list the socialist republic of vietnam to list it as a country of particular concern. i thank my colleague, congressman royce, for
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introducing this resolution. 15 years since the normization of diplomatic relations between the united states and vietnam. bilateral relations have deepen ood with hanoi securing a secure pacific region. we have south nonproliferation. unfortunately, the lack of progress in the area of protecting basic rights and civil liberties enshrined in vietnam's constitution remains an impediment to our bilateral ties. since the bush administration lifted the country of particular concern designation for vietnam in november of 2006, freedom of religion and expression have come under increasing attack. hanoi has tightened its control over religious organizes with numerous reports documenting
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surveillance, seizure of church properties, arrests and other forms of -- other forms of ill treatment made against catholics, and others. as secretary clinton rightfully noted during her visit to hanoi in october, the united states takes notice of these curbs on religious freedom. two recent events stand out. first is the dispute at the pagoda when 400 monks and nuns were evicted. the majority have skenl left vietnam due to lack of protection by the government. more recently, this may, several hundred vietnamese catholic villagers were attacked by tear gas and bullets during a funeral proceedings for renewsing to relocate. several detainees have been held since may and have not been
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allowed to visit their families. i urge my colleagues to support this resolution and stand up for religious freedom in viet in a and i will be handing over the management of this legislation for the remainder of the time to the chairman of the asian pacific island subcommittee of the house foreign affairs committee, mr. faleomavaega and i reserve the remainder of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: mr. speaker, i yield to our very good friend and colleague, the author of the measure, mr. royce of california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes. mr. royce: thank you.
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as author of this resolution, i rise in support of house resolution 20 calling on the state department to list the socialist republic of vietnam as a country of particular concern with respect to religious freedom and i want to say i appreciate very much the assistance of chairman berman in bringing this to the house floor, the assistance of ranking member ros-lehtinen and mr. burton. but also the assistance of congressman joseph cow and i would like to -- cao and i would like to share that the house of representatives has the opportunity to send a very strong message to the communeist government in vietnam and that message is that its abuses against peaceful practitioners of all creeds are unacceptable.
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as reflect for a minute on some of the conditions that those who practice their faith have to contend within vietnam, you think about the 350 mountain yrd christians who remain imprisoned for their beliefs. other religious groups like the unified buddhist church of vietnam and other groups, they face severe persecution from the communeist government in vietnam. several residents have suffered beatings by batons or electric rods in the may assault at the hands of vietnamese government officials. what was the charge? attempting to protect their historic catholic cemetery from government seizure. the leader i met in vietnam and
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had several conversations with him and he has spent the last 33 years of his life either in prison or under house arrest. i think for a minute about a pastor chin h and has been beaten over 20 times and this is a photograph after one of those beatings. he is one of the many faces, i would say battered faces of religious freedom in vietnam. in its 2010 annual report, the u.s. commission on international religious freedom found as follows. vietnam's overall human rights record remains poor and has deteriorated, says the u.s. commission on international religious freedom and they cite police officers and plain clothes men and the religious
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security police. yes, the religious security police routinely harassing and intimidating those who pray outside government-approved religions. they cite beatings with electric batons and sexual assault of monks and confiscation of property and forced avicks. while the state department has documented some of these abuses, real action is needed. by relisting vietnam as a c.p.c., the state department could bring about real change. in addition to the naming and shaming aspect of the report, a wide rank of sanctions from limitations on foreign aid to denial of visas to those in the government could be levied on the regimes that carry out these abuses. the obama administration hasn't used this tool. this will make that tool
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available. some will ask if a c.p.c. redesignation could have an impact. let's look at the experience, the prior experience on this. after being listed as a c.p.c. in 2004, vietnam released several prominent diss i had events and advocates and issued ordinances that prohibited the forced renuns yation of faith. these were results achieved with a c.p.c. designation and more can be achieved. sadly after vietnam was permanently removed from the list in 2006, religious freedom and tolerance has been on a continuous downward slide. the vietnam war is history. we have deepening relations with vietnam. but that fact doesn't mean we should shortchange religious liberty. frankly, we know that raising these issues with hanoi isn't on
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the top of our diplomats' lists. they are uncomfortable to raise these human rights abuses, but putting vietnam on this list where it be longs, we are giving promoting religious freedom a chance and being part of vietnam. it is time to put the house on record in support of the vietnamese people and indeed to freely practice religion is a universal right. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: i reserve at this time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: mr. speaker, i yield to our very good friend, mr. cao, from louisiana, for six minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from louisiana is recognized for six minutes. mr. cao: mr. speaker, the international religious freedom
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act or irfa, requires the u.s. commission on international religious freedom to prepare an annual report on the state of religious freedom throughout the world. irfa also provides that any country which commits systemic ongoing and egregious violations of religious freedom be placed on a list of countries of particular concern or c.p.c., which opens these nations up to economic sanctions by the united states. after several years of urging from the u.s. commission on international religious freedom, vietnam was eventually designated a country of particular concern in 2004 and 2005. and this designation led to modest but unprecedented improvements in the government's treatment of worshipers. since 2006, however, the u.s. state department has declined to
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designate vietnam as a c.p.c. and during the ensuing four years, there have been no further significant improvements and even some back tracking in the progress made on the ability for those of faith to freely practice their religion. the october, 2009, report of the u.s. commission on international religious freedoms found there continue to be far too many serious abuses and restrictions of religious freedom in vietnam. individuals continue to be imprisoned or detained for reasons related to their religious activity or religious freedom advocacy. police and government officials are not held fully accountable for abuses. independent religious activity remaining illegal and legal protections for government-approved religious organizations are both vegas and subject to arbitrary or -- vague
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and subject to ar treash interpretations -- arbitrary interpretations. in addition, improvements experienced by some religious communities are not experienced by others, including the unified buddhist church of vietnam, and other groups and some ethnic minority protestant and buddhists. also over the past year, property disputes between the government and the catholic church in hanoi led to the tension, threats, harassment and violence by contract thugs against peaceful prayer vigils and religious leaders. there are disturbing reports from the public officials forcing believers to renounce their faith. and documented cases in the central highlands of religious prisoners being taken. elsewhere violent actions against catholics and against
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buddhists seem to have increased in frequency and intensity. more systemically, property seizure has been used as a means to control religious practice. since the complete takeover of south vietnam in 1975, the communist government of vietnam has seized many religious institutions and effectively banned their existence. a prime example is the complete property seast seizure of the unified buddhist church of vietnam in 1981 leading to its disillusion. the unified buddhist church of vietnam has been outlawed since and its religious leaders have been constantly what rarsed -- harassed. other religions have suffered similar fates. almost at the rule, all land disputes against the catholic church in vietnam result in violence. a great number of catholic institutions in north vietnam
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have been seized in the 1950's and in south vietnam since the takeover in 1975. parishesers in hanoi were beaten by police and government thugs while attending a prayer vigil for the return of the church properties. they also proceeded to desecrate or destroy religious symbols and properties. those who were perceived to be leaders of these protests were arrested. this pattern of abuse has been repeated the last few years at parishes including a monday stare in the die bees. more recently -- diocese. more recently, a government ordered the catholic town, among sounding -- surrounding towns, to vacate their homes, farmlands and their historic cemetery to make way for a high-end resort to be built by a joint venture
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with private companies. while the people resisted the order, violence broke out during the funeral procession of a member of the parish. the police seized the casket and cremated body of the deceased against her last wish. many members of the funeral procession were beaten, arrested, convicted and sentenced to prison on trumped-up charges. others have fled the country and are seeking asylum. last year a member of the funeral possession was interrogated numerous times and died after severe beatings. mr. speaker, does anyone in this distinguished chamber doubt the need for us to take action? how can we as nation stand by oddly -- idly while a government we increasedly support -- increasingly supported commits such atrocities against its own
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people? at the -- as a vietnamese american i ask for the passage of house resolution 20, calling on the state departments to list the socialist republic of vietnam as a country of particular concern. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i'd like to ask my colleague from indiana how many more speakers does he have on the other side? mr. burton: we have two speakers left. mr. faleomavaega: i would then like to continue to reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: one of the great advocates of human rights, not only of vietnam but around the world, is a leader on the foreign affairs committee, the gentleman from new jersey, mr. smith, who we recognize for five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized for five minutes. mr. smith: i thank my good friend for yielding, mr. speaker. i want to thank mr. royce for this very, very important and
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timely resolution and vote the chairman and the ranking member and ileana ros-lehtinen for bringing this very important resolution to the floor as the session winds down. mr. speaker, in early july nam win, a catholic was savagely beaten for his faith by the vietnamese police. his brother testified at an august human rights commission hearing that police repeatedly kicked his brother in the chest and the back and on his temples. of course that means there's fewer more on the face but his body was riddled with punches and broken bones. but, he said -- blood, he said, poured out of his nose and ears. he told his wife he couldn't handle the beatings anymore. the wife, seeing her husband's broken body, literally kneeled in front of the police and beinged them to stop. in response, they punched and
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kicked him again and again and again and nam win died in his wife's arms. what was nam win's alleged crime? his faith in jesus christ and his devotion to his catholic parish. the entire catholic community and its property is in the process of being confiscated or stolen by the vietnamese authorities. the faithful are a ripe target for the atheististic government of vietnam. the approximate cause for this particular crackdown and unspeakable violence was a may 4 funeral of an elderly woman in an attempt to bury her in the town's catholic cemetery. nam win was a paul bearer when the police busted up the funeral possession of over 1,000 people, beating over 100 mourners, arresting dozens, deliberately beating two pregnant women so as to kill their unborn babies. they even tried to take the
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casket. the reign of terror on this 85-year-old catholic community continues to this day, at least two remaining prisons and the persecutions shows no sign of abating. what happened there isn't an isolated incident. according to the u.s. commission on international religious freedom, its annual 2010 report, quote, property disputes between the government and the catholic church continue to lead to harassment, property destruction and violence, sometimes by contract thugs. hired by the government to break up peaceful prayer vigils, closed quotes. and now we know that includes funerals as well. other faith communities have seen a significant spike in harassment, persecution, confiscation and violence as well. mr. speaker, in 2005 i led a human rights mission to hanoi and ho chi minh city.
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i met with almost 60 pastors, priests and leading buddhists including the venerable quan dough who is under arrest. all expressed hope and varying degrees of optimism due to an apparent easing of religious persecution in vietnam. u.s. ambassador for at large for international and religious freedom john hanford told us that there were promises of further reform made and what he called deliverables, concrete actions by the vietnamese government that it said it would do in the area of religious freedom, coupled with the trade agreement and all of that led to the lifting of the country of particular concern or c.p.c. and you know what happened then? hanoi responded with a massive retaliation against both political and religious believers. signers of block -- block 4806, the human manifesto promoting respect for the rule of law and
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nonviolence, a manifesto that parallel's china's chart -- parallels china were hunted down med to thisically and imprisoned. many religious believers who expected a that you and reform and openness were arrested and in some cases rearrested -- rearrested and sense to prison. father lee, this man here, a catholic priest and a prisoner of conscious for 17 years in jail, a man who committed no crime, i met father lee when he was under house arrest. he was rearrested in 2007, held in confinement and denied emergency medical attention, so bad is he that even the vietnamese let him out under a humanitarian parole but he is still under house arrest. look at this picture of him taken at trial. look at the animosity in the
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eyes of these guards and when they get behind closed doors, mr. speaker, they beat and they break bones and they break heads. and it leads to death or permanent maiming. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. smith: could i have an additional two minutes if you have it? mr. burton: i yield the gentleman one additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: it appears so. the u.s. commission on religious freedom fought no doubt that hanoi release prisoners and expanded some legal protections for nationally recognized groups and prohibited the policy of forced renunsation and expanded the zone of toleration. congress, the president and all of us who espouse for human rights ought to be outraged at vietnam's turn for the worst. we should stand with the oppressed and not the oppressor. president obama should redesignate vietnam a country of particular concern for its egregious violations of human rights. c.p.c. and the penalties
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prescribed by statute, the international religious freedom act, has in the past and can again do a very, very useful tool in promoting religious liberty. i thank my friend for yielding. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, how much more time do i have? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has 17 minutes remaining. mr. faleomavaega: thank you. mr. speaker, i want to thank my good friend, the gentleman from indiana, for our co-management of this important legislation and thank my colleagues, mr. royce, and mr. cao, and my good friend, mr. smith, for their most eloquent statements concerning this proposed resolution. i have no doubt in my mind in terms of the concerns that have been expressed by my colleagues as well as the substance of this proposed resolution. but i do have some concerns. while i fully understand the concerns reflected in the resolution, which was introduced almost two years ago, it's based
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on what i believe the information that may somewhat did not indicate the progress that vietnam has made over the recent years. i think if we look at the statement that was made by our current ambassador to vietnam, u.s. ambassador to vietnam, mr. michael, and his speech that he gave before the human rights day event at the u.s. embassy at the american center in vietnam, just this month, a couple of weeks ago and i quote, another area where over the past three years i have seen strong improvements in religious freedom, where individuals are now largely free to practice their deeply felt convictions. to practice. the churches and mosques are full. increased religious participation. large scale religious gatherings with more than 100,000 participants, growing numbers of
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recognized religious organizations, increasing number of churches and pennsylvania goadas and religious groups. there was a meeting with the pope at the vatican. and vietnam and the holy sea agreed to an appointment of a representative for vietnam as the first step towards the establishment of full diplomatic relations. the ambassador first said it. however, some significant problems remain including harassment and excessive use of force against religious groups in some outliing locations and there were several incidents over the past year where the authorities used excessive force against catholic parishioners inland dispute outside of hanoi and danang.
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these incidents call into question the rule of law and hurt vietnam's religious freedom. restraint on congregations remain slow and cumbersome in some areas of the country particularly in the northwest highlands. the u.s. department of state has not found these incidents rise to the level of listing vietnam as a country of particular concern and i'm confident that while understanding the concerns reflected by the resolution and the testimonies of my colleagues, the state department will make a determination on c.p.c. designation in keeping with the statutory requirements of the international religious freedom act rather than in some responsive consideration in terms of what we are trying to do here this evening. despite isolated incidents which all of us oppose, vietnam is a
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multi religious country with all major religions present including budism, crist tant, and muslim. they boast the second largest population. vietnam has religious followers accounting for 1/5 of the population and over 25,000 religious worship establishments. according to the government, so far the government has recognized 15 new religious organizations, making a total of recognized religious to 32. the state has assisted the publication of the bible in four languages and facilitated the construction and reconstruction of over 1,500 religious establishments. vietnam has hundreds of classes
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on budism and 1,177 religious leaders are actively participating in social management. the council of officials attended the meeting at the vatican. thousands of catholic followers in vietnam joined to celebrate the 2010 year including 300 years of caggeticism in the country. in june, the vatican agreed to establish diplomatic relations and the pope agreed to appoint a representative of the holy sea for vietnam. training of priests and dig in a takers have been maintained and expanded. there are 17,000 priests and nuns are enrolled in training courses.
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the buddhist has four academies which the scale and training quality have been raised. nuns and monks gather for the great buddhist festival and the anniversary from july 27 to august 2 and vietnam is preparing the summit of world budism at the end of this year. february of last year, improvement of religious freedom in vietnam was acknowledged by under secretary of state. the pope's envoy during his visit to vietnam more than a month after house resolution 20 was drafted and introduced. while i'm no expert on catholic relations with the vietnamese government we should consider his view since he is in better to speak on behalf of the catholic church and maybe it's
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my understanding that some of the claims again about the catholic church stem from land dispute and not necessarily religious dispute. the catholic church is moving forward in establishing better relations with vietnam. if one were to single out the u.s. government's mishandling of waco in 1993 we may find ourselves on the end of this resolution and take us to task when the united states bureau of tobacco, alcohol and explosives failed to execute a search warrant located nine miles east of waco, texas and which time the siege was initiated by the federal bureau of investigation which led to the death of 76 people and 20 children. this said, mr. speaker, vietnam
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recognizes it has work to do and vietnam is trying to improve its record on all fronts. last month, i was in hanoi where i met with chairman of the foreign affairs committee, national assembly of the socialist republic of vietnam and vice chairman of the foreign affairs committee of the national assembly of the socialist republic of vietnam and had serious discussions about religious freedom and i can assure my colleagues there is a strong commitment on the part of the government to facilitate religious freedom and the central government is working with the local government to bring about this change. having visited vietnam five times, mr. speaker, during my tenure as chairman of this sker, i have worshipped in catholic pennsylvania rishes and i can verify that the government has been supported of the lds church
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as it tries to establish in the laws of that country. i am reluctant to oppose any resolution dealing with religious freedom because lds is the only church in the united states against which an ex termination order was issued sanctioning mass removal or ex termination against american citizens. the ex termination order was a military order signed by missouri governor on october 27, 1838 directing the mormons be driven from the state. after some 138 areas, the governor, who is the u.s. senator, issued an order recognizing the legal validity and apologized on behalf of the people of the state of missouri
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for the suffering he had caused. and i thank the senator for doing this. knowing the history of the lds church and short-term and long-term consequences that forced exile of 10,000 united states citizens and those before and yet to come, i'm firmly in the belief that we should allow men all the same privilege worship how, where or what they may. while i agree in principle in speaking up for religious freedom, mr. speaker and i do with utmost respect to my colleagues and those who work so hard in bringing this resolution to the floor, this year, we are celebrating 15 years of diplomatic relations with vietnam and one who served during the vietnam war at the height of the tet offensive, we have come a long way and we
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should continue to make this a better effort to establish good relations with this country. on the matter of human rights, i hope we will also consider that the u.s. cannot assume the moral high ground when it comes to vietnam. what i mean by this from 1961 to 1971, the united states government military sprayed more than 11 million gallons, 11 million gallons of agent orange in vietnam subjecting millions of innocent civilians to dioxci nonand despite the suffering that has occurred ever since there is no real interest on the part of our government to clean up the mess that we left behind. i believe we can and should do better and for this reason, mr. speaker, i reluctantly oppose the resolution and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: may i inquire of the chair how much time we have on each side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana has three minutes remaining and the gentleman from american samoa has 5 1/2. mr. burton: i yield to my colleague to california mr. royce, one additional minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. royce: the u.s. commission on international religious freedom has one job and that is to monitor religious freedom around the world and the conclusion they have come to is that the situation is so egregious in vietnam today that that government needs to be put back on the country of particular concern list now. and what they cite as the reason, as the rationale is because over the past two years,
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those speaking out against restrictions on religious freedom and human rights continue to be arrested, they continue to be detained over of the past year, violence by contract thugs against peaceful prayer vigils and religious leaders continues. they said it is accelerating. we aren't talking about deaths that occurred in 1838 right now. my colleagues and i are talking about what happened two months ago in terms of people losing their life in vietnam because they are speaking out for religious freedom. and lastly, in terms of what we was shared to me, he said, they aren't allowing us to practice our faith. the communeist government is trying to change the faith and that's why we're speaking out. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: i yield myself
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such time as i may consume. i want to say for the record, no way have i any disagreements with the concerns and statements made by my colleagues and in their honest opinion. the situation as far as religious freedom is concerned and i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: may i make an inquiry of my colleague, mr. speaker? mr. faleomavaega: i have no additional speakers. mr. burton: do you have any time you would like to yield to our side? mr. faleomavaega: i would like to yield whatever -- i yield one minute. mr. burton: i thank the gentleman for yielding and we'll let mr. smith from new jersey take that one minute and i thank you for your general rossity. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. smith: you know, worldwide, communeist dictatorships either
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crush or seek to control religious organizations. i have seen this in my 30 years as a member of congress. and m.s.n. was coming up for renewal, met with members of congress who would have slick talking points about the number of churches and number of believers, all the while people were suffering in the prisons or the ghoul ags who happened to be believers and all part of a disinformation campaign. i will say to my colleague, vietnam is the exact same tactic and give you some numbers and fact sheets but if you are a believer not under the control and happen to be part of the unified buddhist church and not the church or the unified or the buddhist temples that are under the control of the government, watch out. they will be knocking under your
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door and you will find yourself in prison. and same goes to those who find themselves oppressed in vietnam. members have to back this resolution and send a clear message. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: i want to know if my colleague has any more speakers. mr. burton: we have two minutes left on our side? the speaker pro tempore: that is correct. mr. burton: i would be happy to yield to my good friend from louisiana one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from louisiana is recognized. mr. cao: thank you very much. in this recent trip to vietnam that i made with chairman faleomavaega, i happened to visit my sister in the outskirt of saigon. i was there for about 15 minutes and as soon as i left guess who
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showed up? the police. the police showed up and interrogated my brother-in-law. and they asked him, why prosecute we there, how many people -- why were we there, how many people were there? if they were to do that to a member of the -- family of a member of u.s.a. congressman, what would they do to a normal citizen in vietnam? there are no protections whatsoever. there is a difference between practicing your religion and practicing your faith. religion you can go in there and pray which is good, but practicing faith is when you have to advocate for people's rights to worship, for people's rights to defend their family, to defend their property, to defend their faith in their view. and in that regard the vietnamese government has been lacking in every aspect. thank you and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i yield such time as i may consume. i want to compliment and thank my colleague from louisiana. in fact, it was a high privilege and honor for me to be part of our congressional delegation that visited vietnam. in fact, as there were some very serious issues about him in allowing my colleague from louisiana to come with us because as we all know, this government is not a democracy. it's still under the basis of their being a communist country, controlled by party structure and very different from the rest of us. but what i did insist on the officials of the vietnamese government is that if my friend congressman cao was not going to come with me i wasn't going to come to vietnam. and they did accede to our request and i think it was a real educational experience, even for the vietnamese officials, to see that my good friend was not a bad guy after
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all. for which i tried to strengthen the fact that we may -- stress the fact that we may belong to two separate political parties with different beliefs and understandings but it doesn't mean we shouldn't continue to be friends and i think more than anything in the aftermath of our visit of vietnam, i will say that the officials of the vietnamese government were very impressed by my good friend, congressman cao. the first vietnamese american ever elected to this sacred body of this great institution for which i am very proud as a fellow american to tell all the some 90 million vietnamese people out there that this is what america is all about. only in america can someone of the caliber of congressman cao to be able to be elected and to be a member of this body. that i want to say that i'm very happy to see him and reluctantly to see that i wish him all the best in the future endeavors. i reserve the balance of my time.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: i presume i have one minute remaining, is that correct? the speaker pro tempore: that is correct. mr. burton: well, i'll submit the balance of my statement for the record. i would just like to say that i think it's been proved con cluesively by my colleagues here speaking tonight that christians and buddhists, catholics have been prodded with electric prods, they've been beaten, they've been gagged, they've been mistreated and there is a very strong concern among many of us in congress that the c.p.c. designation should be reimposed. if the state department says that hanoi and vietnam has turned a corner, the corner that's been turned has been down a very darkally and we need to -- dark alley and we need to enlighten that, to let the vietnamese people know that we stand with them for religious freedom and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i
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thank the gentleman from indiana and i do yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. and so the question is will the house is suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 20 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative -- mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the rules are suspended -- mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: i object to the vote on the grounds that a quorum is not present and i make a point of order that a quorum is not present. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. mr. burton: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana is recognized. mr. burton: in order to clarify, we would request the yeas and nays on the bill. the speaker pro tempore: proceedings will already been postponed -- proceedings have already been postponed.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from american samoa seek recognition? mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1757. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1757, resolution providing for the approval of final regulations issued by the office of compliance to implement the veterans employment opportunities act of 1998, that applied to the house of representatives and employees of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from american samoa, mr. faleomavaega, and the gentleman from california, mr. lungren, each will control 0 minutes. the chair now recognizes -- 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: i would ask all members have revise and
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extend to -- five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, the veterans employment opportunities act of 1998 or the veoa, extends veterans' preference rights to covered applicants and employees in covered positions throughout the legislative branch. the act is. i thed in the legislative branch -- the act is implemented in the legislative branch. implementation of the veao requires the board of directors to issue regulations and the house and senate to improve them. without congressionally improved regulations, the veoa does not apply to congress and the rest of the legislative branch. under the congressional accountability act, congressional approval of those regulations can be accomplished by adopting approval resolutions, covering the house and the rest of the legislative branch, the resolution before us now covers the house and the
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next resolution under schedule senate concurrent resolution which cover the rest of the legislative branch except the senate which has already adopted the resolution covering itself. this goes to a complete leving the branch coverage. it has bipartisan and bicameral support, regulations we are considering today have been waiting congressional approval since march 21, 2008. the executive branch has already implemented a veoa hiring preferences, with today's congressional approval, qualified veterans who apply for covered positions in the legislative branch will be given preference rights among jop applicants and remedies to enforce those rights. it is fitting that we move forward on approvinging this resolutions and help returning veterans and now is the right time to do it. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lungren: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of house resolution 1757
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, as mentioned by the gentleman from american samoa, it provides for the approval of final rel regulations issued by the office of compliance to implement the veterans employment opportunities act of 1998 and apply that act to the house of representatives and employees of the house. in 1998 congress passed the veterans employment opportunities act and that gave veterans improved access to federal job opportunities. it also established a redress system for preference eligible veterans in the event that the preference rights were violated. these new regulations finally fulfill that law and ensure that the veterans employment opportunities act of 1998 applies fully not just to the executive branch and other federal employees but also to the legislative branch and our employees as well. i support this bill, i thank my colleague, mr. brady, for his authorship of this resolution, getting to this point has been a long process. i appreciate his support and the efforts of his staff. i urge my colleagues to support our veterans by passing house resolution 1757, i have no other
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speakers and so i would yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back. the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers. did the gentleman from yield his time? i also yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from american so me aa yields back. so the question -- samoa yields back. so the question is will the house agree to house resolution 1757. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from american samoa seek recognition? mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and agree to senate concurrent resolution 77. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the concurrent resolution. the clerk: senate concurrent resolution 77, concurrent resolution to provide for the
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approval of final regulations issued by the office of compliance to implement the veterans employment opportunities act of 1998, that applies to certain legislative branch employing offices and their covered employees. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from american samoa, mr. faleomavaega, and the gentleman from california, mr. lungren, each will control 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks on senate concurrent resolution 77 and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, in agreeing to senate concurrent resolution 77 it will complete legislative branch coverage under the veoa, the senate has already covered itself, thus qualified veterans who apply for covered positions within the legislative branch will be given
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preference rights among job applicants and remedies tone force those rights. this initiative has support and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lungren: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. lungren: mr. speaker, i rise today in support of senate concurrent resolution 77 which approves the final regulations implementing the veterans act of 1998. almost identical to the legislation we just passed this will extend regulations to offices that serve both the house and the senate. these regulations are long overdue. i thank the chairman and the staff foyer moving this forward. i thank the gentleman from american so mowa for bringing this to the floor -- samoa for bringing this to the floor. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back. the gentleman from american so mowa. mr. faleomavaega: i thank the gentleman from california for yielding his time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. so the question is will the
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house suspend the rules and agree to senate concurrent resolution 77. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the concurrent resolution is agreed to and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from american samoa seek recognition? mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5493 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 5493, a bill to provide for the furnishing of statues by the district of columbia for display in statuary hall and the united states capitol. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from american samoa, mr. faleomavaega, and the gentleman from california, mr. lungren, each will control 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the
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gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i rise in strong support of h.r. 5493 as amended which will invite each of the territories especially including the district of columbia to provide a statue to be placed with other such statues among the 50 statues that are now all over the u.s. capitol. and first of all i do want to thank the chairman of the committee of house administration, the gentleman from pennsylvania, my good friend mr. brady, for his support and leadership in bringing this legislation and also my good friend from california, mr. lungren, for his support. and with the help of chairman brady and the staff, h.r. 5493 now includes language making it favorable to have this bill
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brought now before the floor for consideration as it was approved by the committee. and i want to especially thank my good friend and colleague and the distinguished lady from the district of columbia for her willingness to work with us on this important bill and i want to acknowledge the joint efforts that we have made in advocating the importance of this bill for our five u.s. territories and especially also for the district of columbia. which is basically to provide and furnish to the architect of the capitol a statue of citizens to be placed in the national statuary hall in the same manner of statues now honoring citizens of the states. of the several states. the national statuary hall holds grand display of statues to commemorate the 50 states. their historical significance
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have added to the overall impressive design of the u.s. capitol to the three million to five million visitors, the hall serves as a reminder of the values and significant contributions of certain individuals that shape the foundation upon which this great country was founded. five years ago the architect of the capitol received a statue from new mexico and another from the state of nevada making the entire collection complete complete. it was also in the same time i introduced a bill to invite territories including american samoa, guam, and virgin islands. then former delegate or
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congressman from guam was introduced in 1985 except by proposed statue. i introduced a similar bill with modified language to include it. it has now incorporated all these requests and i want to thank chairman brady and ranking member lungren and members of the house administration committee and staff for their support of this proposal. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time and i urge my colleagues to support this bill. mr. lungren: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lungren: i rise in support of h.r. 5493 and permits the district of columbia and commonwealth of puerto rico, guam, american samoa, commonwealth of northern mariana iletsdz to display a statue.
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the district of columbia and these territories are important pieces that make up our national identity and i support their right to honor a noteworthy figure from their communities. therefore, this legislation is unusual and budget neutral. in the coming years, i look forward to welcoming these statues and learning more about the individuals that each entity chooses to honor. i urge my colleagues to support this resolution and i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: i ask that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend material and include extraneous material. i yield all the time that she wants, my good friend, the distinguished delegate from the
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district of columbia. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. norton: i thank my good friend. i knew he wouldn't leave me behind. mr. speaker, i am particularly grateful this evening to chairman brady for working so closely with me on the bill for statues for the district of columbia, a bill i have introduced for years, but that did not move until mr. brady became chair. however, ranking member dan lungren deserves special thanks for today's bill. when he said he could not support my bill for two statues for the district, he didn't say no to everything. he introduced his own bill for one statue for the district and one for each of the territories.
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the bill before the house this evening is essentially that bill, the lungren bill. our bill, the bill i have introduced for our original bill, the bill i have introduced, the two statues, the statue for the district of kwlum yeah was introduced only to give some small recognition to the taxpayers of the district who get little recognition for their taxpaying status. in the end, in the spirit of compromise represented by mr. lungren's bill, i decided that we should seek to move mr. lungren's bill at this time and i thank him for his bill. we recognize that the statues are mere symbols.
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but for us, they are symbols of american citizenship itself as embedded in the recognition of of their own outstanding citizens by each state. one need only go downstairs in this house to watch visitors from your own congressional districts as they view their statues to see the power and the patriotism, the power of the patriotism and pride the statues inspire in your own constituents. the lungren bill creates a dilemma for the district of columbia, however. so great was the desire for the statues generated by my bill
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that the citizens were asked to indicate whom they wanted to represent the city in statue for the united states capitol. well, citizens chose two great americans, had their statues designed and actually built and placed in the district's city hall until such time as this bill or my original bill passed the house. and if this bill passes for now, they will have to decide which one of two great men will represent the city. this will be difficult, because it speaks volumes about who we are in the district, that the two men chosen were not only
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long time zirbled district of columbia residents -- distinguished district of columbia residents, frederick douglass born a slave, great human rights leader of his time but was u.s. marshal for the district of columbia and district of columbia recorder of deeds and resident of southeast washington, whose majestic home is now a national park service site for thousands of visitors who come each year. and pier lenefant who designed the nation's capital. we have decided it's better to
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have to decide which one of two great residents of the district of columbia will represent our city for now than to have no choice at all. i ask this house to support this bill. and again, i thank mr. lungren for his comprise in -- compromise in introducing it. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lungren: i understand the importance of having a statue that reflects the people of the district of columbia and the territories. i remember the pride we had as californiaians when we brought the statue of ronald reagan a year and-a-half ago and a great example of someone who is not born in california, but someone who rose to great prominence in california and someone who loved
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our state. i appreciate very much and i love the spirit of bipartisanship that the city has shown to choose mr. lenfant was a historic figure and frederick douglass, a prominent republican and great american. so i thank you for that great choice, but i know who i would vote for but you have two great americans representing the district of columbia and i urge my colleagues to support the resolution and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back. the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: i echo the sentiments from my colleague and i thank my good friend from california for his support in bringing this piece of legislation to the floor and especially chairman brady and all his membersp in bringing
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this bill and with that, mr. speaker, i also yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5493 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed. and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. without objection, the title is amended. for what purpose does the gentleman from american sa mow aver seek recognition? mr. faleomavaega: i move to suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1377. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1377, resolution honoring the accomplishments of norman mineta and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore:
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pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from american samoa, mr. fall yeoh ma vega and the gentleman from california, mr. lungren, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous remarks and i did he fer all the time to the author of this proposed resolution, the gentleman from california, mr. honda. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. honda: i thank the gentleman from american samoa and i think mr. lungren. mr. speaker, as the chair of the chair of the pacific asian american caucus, i pay tribute
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to my dear friend and mentor, norman mineta. norm, a distinguished former member of this house has broken through many glass ceilings, not only for himself but for the rest of us. he was the first asian american mayor and first to hold a presidential cabinet position trusted by both democratic and republican positions. he has continued to dedicate much of his energy towards the infrastructure fleaded for the asian pacific island communities to flife and grow. when i think of his legacy in our community i'm reminded of the poem "footprints in the sand." during times of trial and suffering, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then i carried you. norm was one of the first in our community to see a light at the
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end of our path, a path cleared by so many greats before him and to lead us forward. as with many movements, we stumbled and wanted to forget the past. but norm never let us stop from moving forward, our rights as americans. in good times, norm marched besides us. when times were tough, norp carried us, strengthened by his vision of possible and underdiing patriotism to this country. norm had a hand in establishing in strength then so many of our communities, key national organizations and deepened those footprints and span from national council of asian pacific americans to voter engagement, organizations like apa vote and future leaders of
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our communities such as the asian pacific american institute for congressional studies to the memorial foundation and japanese american citizens league, to establishing the caucus, which i chair today from the national accomplishments because he is so connected to our communities, mr. speaker, it is easy to forget what a major player norm has been on a national level. during his 20 years in congress, he rose to the house transportation committee where he authored the landmark intermodal surface transportation act of 19 1 and he was instrumental in the passage of h.r. 442, the civil liberties act of 1988 which provided an official government apology for japanese americans interned during world war ii.
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people like norm and the late congressman bob matsui, his wife, congresswoman matsui, and myself. he was the first asian american to hold a cabinet post. the following year, when president george w. bush was organizing his cabinet, he searched the country for the most qualified person on transportation issues and the leader who could put the interest of the country above party politics. president bush found that leader in norm and appointed him secretary of transportation. norm served as secretary of transportation from 2001 to 2006. the longest serving secretary in the history of the department. how fortunate our country was, mr. speaker, to have had a tested, experienced leader like norm mineta at the helm of the transportation department in 9/11 terrorist attacks. norm issued the historic order
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to ground all civilian aircraft on that fateful day and had the kill to get thousands of planes back up in the air and the passengers safely home to their families. what impresses me most about norm's leadership as secretary of transportation after the attacks and perhaps what many do not know is a strong on stoigs racial and religious profiling. having grown up in a time when norm and his family were led away from their homes by rifles and bayonets and interned in wyoming solely because of their ancestry, he refused to allow the same injustices to happen to innocent muslim and arab americans. from this time -- from his time as mayor of san jose to his years in congress rising to chairman of the transportation committee to his leadership as secretary of commerce for president clinton and secretary of transportation for president bush, norm has remained rooted
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in social justice and love of country. in 1980, mr. speaker, with the help of norm mineta, congress established the commission on wartime allocation and internment of civilians. it was charged with the duty of examining executive order 9066 which led to the internment of over 100,000 american citizens in world war ii. three years laettner 1983, the commission issued its findings in the book personal justice denied. concluding that the internment was based on racial prejudice, war hysteria and a failure of political leadership. let me repeat, mr. speaker, a failure of political leadership. throughout his long and distinguished service to our nation, norm committed himself to making sure that our country never has a failure in political leadership like it did seven years ago.
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every time we step into the well of this house, i'm reminded of the example norm set for me and for others throughout his life in public service. it is telling that during this heated political climate, both republicans and democrats can come together to honor a man who -- whose service supersedes party affiliation. i thank norm for his years of friendship and mentorship, i thank his family, his wife, his two sons david and stuart, his stepsons robert and mark, and his brothers and sisters for giving norm a life outside of work. we know that norm still has many years of advocacy and leadership in him. mr. speaker, i want to thank chairman brady and the house leadership for bringing this resolution to the floor. before i ask my colleagues to support this passage, before i yield back the balance of my time, i want to make it clear that this is not a memorial resolution.
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this is a resolution to recognize a man and his work while he is still alive and appreciate it. i know that, quite frankly, he's not prepared to accommodate a memorial. with that, mr. chairman, i want to thank my colleagues, the leadership, for this opportunity to be able to recognize and honor an american first, a man who understands that ethnicity is important, nationality is important, our flag is important, but most of all, our allegiance to the constitution is utmost. for that, i thank you and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. berman: -- mr. lungren: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lungren: i rise in support
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of resolution 1467 honoring norm mineta. i'm glad mr. honda made it clear that while we honor him, mr. mineta is very much with us. secretary mineta has had a distinguished and praise worthy career in public service and i'm pleased to join my colleagues in honoring him. born in san jose, california to japanese immigrant parents, it was during world war ii, due to executive order 9066, that he and his family were deemed enemy aliens and were forced to leave their home and live in the santa anita racetrack paddocks for three months before being sent to the hart mountain internment camp in wyoming. as was suggested by mr. honda, despite this humiliation, secretary mineta persevered he graduated from the university of california berkley stool of -- school of business
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administration. in 1967, he became the first person of minority to serve on the san jose city council. he was elected mayor of san jose and became the first asian american mayor of a major u.s. city. in 1975 he was elected to the u.s. house of representatives rm he served in this house until 1995. in congress, he chaired the committee on public works and transportation, was a key author of the landmark intermodal surface transportation act of 1991. we he also, as was said, help establish the asian-pacific american heritage week and asian-pacific american heritage month which rightly recognizes the role of japanese immigrants and chinese laborers in our country. it was through his leadership along with others, including
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senator inoueye, that the civil b liberties act was passed offering appropriate apology for the actions taken against japanese americans in world war ii. mr. speaker, i was proud to serve as vice chairman of that commission. it was at the urging of mr. mineta and bob matsui that i agreed to serve on that commission. i remember with great pride that while the issue was somber and tragic the pursuit of truth and justice was something we all shared guided by the leadership of norm mineta. in 2000, sec are retear mineta became the first asian american to hold a post in a presidential cabinet as he served as secretary of commerce under president clinton and wame the first asian american to serve as sec are retear of transportation. awarded the presidential medal of freedom in 2006, the highest civilian award given in the united states and granted the
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order of the rising son, -- sun, the highest honor boe stowed on someone of japanese descent by the japanese government. he has lived a life of sacrifice that country this resolution honors his accomplishments, his legacy and inspires and encourages us to reflect upon the lessons of his distinguished life. it was a pleasure to serve in the house of representatives of with norm mineta. you may have differences of opinion with him but he never allowed it to rise to a level of being disagreeable. he was someone you could speak with. even though you may have different positions on issues on this floor, i don't think i ever heard a cross word come from norm mineta with respect to other members of this house. i thank congressman hon ka and congressman chu from the great state of california for
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offering this resolution. i urge my colleagues to support this resolution and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from american samoa is recognized. mr. honda: there seems to be a california conspiracy here in this legislation. be that as it may, i'm honored to yield five minutes to the distinguished gentlelady from california, ms. chu. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for five minutes. ms. chu: i rise today to honor one of america's great pioneers. secretary norman mineta is a role model for americans of every color, background and creed. his story is one of sacrifice, hardship, dedication and triumph. his success in the face of adversity is not only important to asian americans, but to all americans. secretary mineta was born to japanese immigrant parents who came to america for a better life even though they faced
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harsh conditions, particularly in the halls of congress. after passage of the asian exclusion act, japanese were prevented from becoming citizens, had to carry papers with them all the time and were harassed or detained. if they couldn't produce the proper documents, they were thrown into prison. when mineta was a young boy, he and his parents were rounded up and shipped off to live in the santa anita racetrack on the infamous order of president roosevelt in world war ii. three months later, they ended up at hart mountain internment camp where they lived surrounded by barbed wire as the war dragged on. for some, such treatment would make them abandon their country. but not secretary mineta. after graduating from business school at cal berkley, he signed up for the army and served the very nation that
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imprisoned his family as an -- and he served as an intelligence officer in japan and korea. this dedication to service never left him and when asked to join the san jose city council, he jumped at the chance. with this city council seat, he became the first minority and first asian american city councilmember in san jose. it wasn't long before he was elected the first asian american of a major u.s. city. thus began his long line of major accomplishments for a leader who was ahead of his time. it's because of secretary mineta, who introduced legislation when he was in congress, that we designate may as asian more than history month. because of that, today all americans are reminded of the many contributions asian americans are made to this country. it was secretary mineta who spearheaded the long push and final passage of the japanese american reparations bill.
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finally there was relief for the 120,000 japanese americans who lost everything while being interned in world war ii just because of their ancestry. secretary mineta co-founded and co-chaired the asian pacific american caucus, and it provides a unified voice for issues unique to the asian american community. that was all before he became secretary. a decade ago, he was appointed by president clinton as the u.s. secretary of commerce making him the first asian american to be a cabinet member and then he was appointed the only democratic cabinet secretary under president george bush to head the department of transportation. and after five years in the post, he became the longest serving transportation secretary in the department's history. i can think of no one more
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deserving for this body to honor than secretary mineta. he is an inspiration to many, including me, and we owe a debt of gratitude for all that he's done to put asian americans on the map and to put america on the map. it's because of his leadership that america is a better and stronger nation today. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lungren: i'm pleased to yield three minutes to mr. coble to make sure this is not an all-california event. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. coble: i thank the speaker and i thank my friend from california for having yielded. as has been mentioned, mr. speaker, the distinguished career of norm mineta included service in the house of representatives where he represented his district in california and as has been
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noticed he was subsequently appointed as the u.s. department of transportation secretary, having served as president george w. bush's d.o.t. secretary. i met norm mineta initially in the well of the people's house. it involved one of the first bills i managed on the floor, in fact it was my first managed bill. norm and i were on opposite sides of that bill. and norm's side prevailed. norm then came to me, crossed the aisle and expressed his thankers in manner in which i had managed the bill. i was a fledgling rookie, mr. speaker, norm mineta a seasoned, highly regarded member of the united states house of representatives. but this was vintage mineta, always making others feel special, always elevating
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others. once he became the d.o.t. secretary, norm learned that i had previously served in the united states coast guard. the coast guard at that time was a department of transportation service. norm mineta began addressing me as coastey. to this day i'm known as coast ie and i'm proud to have participated in this resolution recognizing the accomplishments of norm mineta. best regards to you and your family and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from north carolina yields back. the gentleman from american samoa. mr. faleomavaega: i yield three minutes to my good friend from massachusetts for his statement.
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mr. frank: i came to the floor to do a special order which i will do subsequent, but i saw this was on the agenda and i was moved to speak. i had the great honor of being the chairman of the subcommittee on administrative law when the japanese republicerations and apology bill was passed. norm mineta and the late bob matsui approached me and we talked about it. i had in college read the case which appalled me when the u.s. supreme court denied any relief to the japanese americans that had been mistreated with no justification. and i was very pleased to have the opportunity to work with two great men, norm mineta and bob
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matsui to undo this. i had the enormous honor being able to read on the floor of this house the words of that bill on behalf of the nation, congress apologizes. i can't think of a greater example than for us to have voted yes, we apologize we did wrong. i was very pleased to work with norm. here's the point i wanted to add, several years after that, i was the chairman and we got the bill through. several years that a group of younger people offered an amendment to support the right of gay men and lesbians, people like myself, to express their love for each other by marrying. there was a generational divide about what should happen. norm mineta, by then a senior
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member of congress was involved. now, he got involved voluntarily. members here will understand, we have enough controversy here on the floor. we don't generally seek out controversies. indeed we tend to duck them. he intervened in that debate but in the formal sense of intervention and said in words that move me to this day, that a gay man, like myself, had been a chairman of the committee that brought forward this bill and after that, how could he and how could an organization which he played a major role deny our basic rights. that meant a great deal to me but it meant something of universal appeal. here was norm mineta who having worked hard and led us to deal with the great injustice to which he had been subjected making a point i hope members will understand.
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injustice cannot be divided and fought by some and not by others. it cannot be that people will object only when they are treated unfairly but turn their backs when others are treated the same. but norm mineta -- i ask for an additional minute from the gentleman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for an additional minute. mr. frank: norm mineta involved himself in that debate to make the point not simply about me, i was incidental to the broader point, that human rights ought to be treated, not this group or that group and people should fight for themselves but having fought for themselves, they should not stop for fighting for others. he taught a whole lot of people in as has been said, not in an obnoxious way or a loud way, but
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through sincerity. as i will look back some point in my career, having had the opportunity to work with norm mineta on that bill and the way in which he dealt with it and turned it into a lesson for all of us about the fight for justice, will be one of the highlights. i thank all of those for bringing this forward. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. lungren: if the gentleman has no other speakers. mr. faleomavaega: how much more time do i have? the speaker pro tempore: four minutes remaining. mr. faleomavaega: i would like to consume such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. faleomavaega: i think all has been said by our previous speakers and i want to thank the gentleman from california for his support of this legislation and chairman brady as well and members of the administration
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committee. i want to ask unanimous consent that the full text of my statement be made part of the record, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i learned something that i don't think was ever mentioned in my personal and close association in knowing this giant named norm mineta and former member of the late congressman bob matsui. the interesting thing about the history of these two gentlemen is they were both incarcerated in relocation camps, what i call concentration camps when they were five, six, seven years of age. and one of the things i remember that norm shared with us, the story of being in these relocation camps when they were in their youth was the nature of how these machine gun nests were being placed within the compound
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and the interesting thing was they asked what was the purpose of having these where the japanese americans were being intender and this is to protect them from outsiders who would do them harm. the machine gun nevts were pointed inward into the compound rather than having any concern about what may happen outside the compound. as a former member of the 442nd infantry group, i'm a proud member of the 100 batallion 442nd and to give you a history of the legacy and what norm mineta represents as far as american history is concerned. deaths pite all the height of racism that was heaped against americans, americans who happened to be of japanese
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ancestry, they were hearded like cattle, over 100,000 americans, men, women and children in camps for fear they might cause problems or whatever they felt was necessary. but despite all of that, some 10,000 japanese american men volunteered to serve and fight our enemy during world war ii. and as a result, the 100 baion and the 442nd infantry were organized and 18,000 individual medals, 9,000 purple hearts, 560 silver stars, 52 distinguished silver crosses and only one medal of honor and i'm happy that this was corrected when there was a renewed process, 19 additional medals of honor were awarded to these soldiers who fought for our country during
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world war ii and one of our senators was a recipient. so i wanted to share that. norm mineta is truly a giant of a man and among 15 million asian pacific americans who are proud to see what he has done not only as a leader but providing tremendous service to our nation and i want to say that respectfully and with my good friend from massachusetts and the delegation from california for their support of this proposed legislation. with that, mr. speaker, i urge my colleagues to support this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1377. those in favor say aye. the gentleman will postponehis request.
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the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1377. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative -- mr. faleomavaega: mr. speaker, i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does does the gentleman seek recognition? mr. faleomavaega: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen having risen, yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. the chair lays before the house the following enrolled bill. the clerk: senate 2906, an act to amend the act of august 9,
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1955, to modify a provision related to leases related to certain indian tribes. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house the following personal requests. the clerk: leaves of absence requested for mr. danny davis of illinois for today and ms. woolsey of california for today. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the requests are granted. for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition? mr. frank: i ask unanimous consent that today following legislative business and any special orders heretofore entered into, the following members may revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material, myself, mr. conyers, mr. yarmuth, ms. kaptur, mr. defazio and ms.
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woolsey. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2009 and under a previous order of the house, the following members are recognized for five minutes each. mr. frank of massachusetts. mr. frank: mr. speaker, i have been troubled by what seems to me a mistake in focus in the debate about reducing the deficit. i agree it is important to reduce the deficit and i believe i'm more focused on reducing the deficit than my colleagues on the other side of the aisle who have put deficit reduction aside in favor of a fairly indiscriminate degree of tax reduction. couple weeks ago, reducing the deficit was the number one priority. but reducing taxes on the
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wealthiest in america overtook it. what troubles me is the extent to which people mainly on the republican side and elsewhere as well have said what we need to do to get -- get the deficit down is to reduce entitlements. that's a polite way of saying they want to cut social security, medicare and medicaid, but those are the things up on the agenda. that is neither socially or economically the sensible way to begin with the short-term, near term deficit reduction we need. we do i believe need some stimulus. i'm glad we are extending the unemployment compensation and i wish we were helping keeping people on the payroll. the private sector has added. job growth has been held down because the public sector has been forced to fire people.
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but the focus on medicare and social security is mistaken economically and politically. mr. speaker, let me calculate, about 45 years ago, i took an economics course in graduate school from a young assistant professor named henry aaron. the "new york times" recently, he had an article in the op ed page called all or nothing equals nothing, which he argued that the focus on reducing the deficit by 2020, which is the time we have set ourselves, which is very important, is an issue that should not encompass a focus on social security and medicare. he is he is not saying we should ignore social security and medicare but only that a rational way to go wouldn't focus on them.
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social security won't be contributing to the deficit. social security at this point is in such good economic shape that people decided social security should be a contributor to economic stimulus because we are reducing the revenue that comes into social security for two years by reducing the payroll tax. i think that's a useful stimulus, but i regret the fact that it was not accompanied by a binding piece of legislation that will return that money from elsewhere in the general fund. so that we don't put social security further in the hole. but as henry aaron points out, yes, we should begin to look at social security and the problems of 30 years from now, my view is that you do that mostly by increasing the level of income on which taxes are levied but there's no need to begin doing that right away. i should have said this earlier, mr. speaker, two of the great accomplishments of america in the 20th century, social security and medicare, accomplished an important goal.
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they made it the case that poverty was no longer going to be the rule for many older people. prior to social security and then medicare, poverty was too often the reward for living long enough if you weren't rich. we have brought older people on the whole, not entirely, out of poverty. there are still enough low-income older people that i greatly regretted that this house and the senate, which are apparently ready to give multimillionaires tax breaks couldn't support $250 per person for social security recipients, some of whom are wealthy but many of whom are quite poor. i had people say, you don't want to give barren -- warren buffett $250, mr. buffett objected to a $250,000 grant he's being offered and the tax reduction that's being offered, tax reduction from what current law would be. henry aaron makes the point that focusing on social
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security is taking up a controversial issue prematurely and as for medicare, here is what he says, which is of great social and economic importance. quote to slash medicare and medicaid spending before reforms to the health care system bear fruit would mean reneging on the nation' commitment to provide standard health care for the elderly, disabled and the poor. the only way to realize savings in the two programs is to redo the health care system in a way to slow growth. i am asking, mr. speaker that members read this, under the permission i have to include this in the record. henry aaron is a great economist. he's studied social security as well as any -- as well as anybody. he has studied medicare. he makes the point that focusing almost exclusively on those, or primarily on those as a way to end the deficit is bad
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social, economic and political policy let me say, mr. speaker, speaking for myself, not for mr. aaron, there are things we can do in the near term. if we hasn't gone into iraq that terribly mistaken war, in which so many brave americans suffered, we would have been a trillion dollars more than we have today. we are grossly overextended in having military presence all over the world where it is needed and where it isn't. we continue to spend tens and tens of billions a year protecting western europe when they're not in danger and can protech themselves. let's focus on reducing military spending and put restraints elsewhere, but as henry aaron points out, let's not make the mistake of focusing on social security and medicare, prematurely in the case of social security and in a socially destructive way in the case of medicare and
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medicaid. the speaker pro tempore: mr. poe of texas. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house out of order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. >> mr. speaker, i rise today to pay tribute to petty officer zarian woods of houston, texas. zairian, known as z to his friends, was killed on october 16, 2010, by a bomb blast while on foot pal pa troll in afghanistan. mr. olson: he was 29 years old.
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after serving combat in iraq from 2007 to 2008, zarian volunteered for a second combat tour. this tour sent him on a seven-month stint to afghanistan where he was assigned to india company, third battalion, first marine regiment, first marine division, first marine expeditionary force. z was trained to be a corpsman, first out of the fox hole to rush to a wounded comrade. in afghanistan, he was known as doc. serving on the frontlines alongside infantrymen from camp pendleton, california. z was the a 1999 graduate of south houston high school where he competed on the trojan wrestling team. after high school, z worked as a youth pastor and tutor for at-risk children on houston's
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northeast side and as a merchandiser for coca-cola before enlisting in the navy in 2006. z we was known for living life to the fullest. his life embodies the fabric of the exceptional men and women who comprise our u.s. military. he is the embodyment of the honorable, courageous and kay pais trotic young americans we are privileged to have defending our country. his selfless heroism, both as a civilian and in the military, created a legacy of courage and patriotism that will not be forgotten. by those who knew him. the lebber -- the liberty we
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cherish in this nation has come at a great cost. zarian and his family have paid the ultimate price for our freedom. but it is not without the tremendous gratitude of this nation, this congress, and this congressman. mr. speaker, america cannot repay the debt we owe to zarian and his family. what can we do? we can say thank you. thank you. thank you. to z. for his selfless commitment to serve our nation. and thank you, thank you, thank you to his family for raising such a strong, wonderful, and selfless navy hero. zarian wood is a true patriot and a grateful nation says semper fi.
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fair winds and following seas. z, may you find eternal peace in god's arms. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. mr. conyers of michigan. mr. jones of north carolina. mr. yarmuth of kentucky. mr. burton of indiana. ms. kaptur of ohio. ms. ros-lehtinen of florida. mr. defazio of oregon. mr. flake of arizona. ms. woolsey of california. mr. lincoln diaz-balart of florida. mr. mcclintock of california. and mr. gingrey of georgia.
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under the speaker's announced policy of january 6 of 2009, the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the majority leader. ms. jackson lee: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i am saddened by the occasion of which i come to the floor of the house. but it is a privilege to be able to speak about a great
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american. for if we do not capture the life and the legacy of great americans, we find out -- find ourselves forgetting and some would say if we don't remember the past, we are doomed to repeat some of those hills and valleys in the future. tonight, i want to remember ambassador richard holbrooke, of whom this nation lost on monday evening. it is important that his story be told, for i would like to know him and for this nation to know him as america's peacemaker. but many will say that peacemaker had a tough edge.
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before i start, i want to mention his family and express my sympathy to them for their loss. his wife, two sons, and his stepchildren, all who loved him so very, very much. what i would say to you is that this was an action man. he was someone who threw himself into the world of diplomacy. and frankly, there was no challenge of peace too difficult for ambassador richard holbrooke. one newspaper, the "usa today," called him, as he is known in the headline, bulldozer, giant of diplomacy, holbrooke dies. among his credit the 1995 bosnian pact. but richard was also known
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around the world for being unending and unceasing in his commitment to solving a problem. he would ask you to work with him to solve that problem. they say, if richard calls you and asks for you something, just say yes. if you say no, you'll eventually get to saying yes. but the journey will be very painful. ambassador holbrooke was not prepared to give up he learned to become extremely informed about whatever country he was in. he would push for an exit strategy and look for ways to get those who live in a country to take responsibility for their own security. he didn't mind getting engaged and involved with those who lived in faraway places. whether it was vietnam or
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whether or not -- whether or not it was bosnia and the resulting agreement, the dayton peace treaty. the "washington post" headline that he was credited with deft maneuvering that resulted in that peace treaty he broke the accord in bosnia and he was speaking -- seeking peace in afghanistan and he refused to give up. so tonight, it is important that we remember this man and this gentleman, giant of a man. large in size and with a capacity to do much. so america was saddened by his loss. and particularly to note that ambassador holbrooke always accepted the call to duty, whether it was as u.n. ambassador or a special envoy, of which president obama called him to be. in the time of sadness, many
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came to present and to give their thoughts. let me share with you some of those words. for nearly 50 years, richard served the country he loved with honor and distinction he worked as a young foreign service officer in the vietnam war and then supported the paris peace talks which ended that war. as a young assistant secretary of state for east asian and pacific affairs, he helped normalize relations with china. relations to china. he helped europe emerge from a long cold war and encouraged nato to welcome new members. the progress we have made in afghanistan and pakistan is due to no small measure to richard's relentless focus on america's national interests and pursuit of peace and security. he understood in his life his
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rknd his interests that they encompassed the values that we hold so dear and as so usual, he also mentored young people who will serve our country for decades to come. one of his friends and admirers once said that if you are not on the team and you are in the way, god help you. like so many presidents before me, i'm grateful that richard holbrooke was on my team, as are the american people, president obama. i remind you, like so many presidents before me, i'm grateful he was on my team. the president understood the kind of strength that ambassador holbrooke had. this sounds like him, if you aren't on his team and you are in his way, god help him, but remember he was doing it for the good of his nation and good of
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the world. in a lifetime of passionate and brilliant service, freedom and oppression, richard holbrooke saved lives and secured peace. he was central to our efforts to limit ethnic cleansing and paved the way for its independence and found the way to break the stale mates in peace talks. little known to people i was proud to nominate as united states ambassador to the united nationses where he equipped the challenges former president bill clinton. let me reiterate these words, he helped restore hope for countless people around the world. i remember engaging with ambassador holbrooke in the early stages of my congressional career and i remember him as the united nations ambassador, resilient, joyful, persistent,
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determined, ready to tackle the world for peace. he wasn't bored with his job, but always ready to do what was right. richard holbrooke was a larger than life figure who through his brilliance, determination and shear force of will helped bend the curve of history in the direction of progress. he touched so many lives and helped save countless more. he was a tireless negotiator, a relentless advocate for american interests and a tireless ambassador. the words pouring out for him, from his early days in vietnam to his role of bringing peace in the balkans, he helped shape our history and i had the privilege
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to know richard for many years and call him a friend and i have counted on his advice, relied on his leadership. this is a sad day for me, for the state department and yes for the united states of america, secretary of state hillary clinton. some would say that state and defense, power and diplomacy, sometimes did not match or mix, but richard holbrooke knew how to walk that line. ambassador holbrooke was one of the most consequential public servants, bringing his energy, ten asity and intellect to bear on the most difficult national security interests of our time, secretary of defense, robert gates. he never lost time fighting for ideals he believed in, never lost touched faced by the millions of people he never knew and never lost hope that those
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same people could live in peace, security and safety and he shared his joint aspirations, joint chief of staff, michael musclens. he was a frequent visitor to the white house. those who worked in this area and those who did not knew ambassador richard hole brookee and drew the admiration and respect and sometimes the intimidation of those who watched him work and wondered what he would say next. i can tell you someone who has watched his work, he would be talking about peace. further words about him, his drive was immense, his desire to do good in the world was fierce and he pursued to do it with resolution that was second to none. his legacy will be his work, his inspiration to so many around the world. that's what we should note about
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ambassador holbrooke, how many miles he accumulated in his travels around the world, how many times in his travels around the world he went. more than we could probably calculate, because when this nation called him, when there was a conflict, a difficult situation, when people were at odds, when others were suffering, he wanted to intervene and bring peace and wanted to see the best for pakistan and afghanistan and wanted the people to trife and grow and the children to mature into citizens of their nation and people of afghanistan to have freedom and a good government and good governance and opportunity for girls to go to school and women be held in dignity and firm access to opportunity that we cherish here in the united states of america. he cared about our soldiers on the front line and knew they were putting themselves on the
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line so he could work his magic and bring resolution. you know what i would say to my colleague, i know that the heads of state of both pakistan and afghanistan have experienced the similar loss and pain of a giant like ambassador holbrooke in losing his life. i know that because both presidents called the family to express their concern, presidents called from their homes, because they respected a man who would get in the mix and fight both if he had to to draw them together and to iron out or to box out these particular issues that were keeping us from being united around the question of peace. further comments about this great man. they noted that ambassador
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holbrooke's service went around the world and united states permanent representative to the united nationses as well for his energetic and commitment to promoting peace and strengthening international cooperation in the united nationses. i will tell you his work at the united nations allowed him to touch governments around the world and i venture to say any hot spot that would occur today, this giant of a man would be able to go and begin to develop a solution. remember what i said, any country that he would go to, he would begin to no more than anyone else about that country and probably more than those who lived there. that's what made him effective and the ability to talk to heads of states and prime minimums sters and foreign minimums sters
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and those who were engaged in that diplomacy. it was the understanding of their culture and their language and how they thought but his own thoughts and he knew he wanted peace and he would do what was necessary. there were so many that considered him friends, but there were really so many more that respected him for being the bulldozer, the giant for peace, i call him america's peacemaker. further comments that i pay tribute to his diplomatic skills, strategic vision and legendary determination as the 1995 dayton agreement, he played a key role in ending the role in bosnia. at the end of this long and distinguished career, he traveled to afghanistan and pakistan in pursuit of peace and stability in the region than he
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would not stop. he knew that history was unpredictable and we had to defend our security by facing conflict in distant places and transatlantic alliance remains indefensible, secretary general of nato. and so, ambassador holbrooke knew how to put it together and work with the various entities that represented the front lines for europe and other countries. he knew how to walk the walk and talk the talk. i remember as a new member of congress coming in during the hostile and horrible conflict bosnia, the ethnic cleansing that occurred and to realize that one man was the pivotal point of working on the dayton peace treaty. i tell you how important that was. new member of congress, i was able to go on the first delegation into bosnia, then to
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meet with heads of state in bosnia and former yugoslavia and we went and landed where there was no actual peace in place at that time. they were looking to finalize the dayton peace treaty and were going into determine whether or not this peace treaty was going to be welcomed by the people. as we went into this town that was known for its beautiful alps and skiing opportunities, i was literally shocked and drew me back to pictures i saw in history books in world war ii when europe looked like it was bombed out, whole buildings had their tops knocked off, libraries, doors open and books on the ground, people walking aimlessly through the streets. and as we walked to what was left of a public building to meet the various leaders, there
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were women who came up to me in the street and asked, had i seen their son in this horrible war, they lost their son. is their son alive, in their language speaking to me. i know the price of that horrible war by way of seeing those people in pain. ambassador holbrooke understood it and secured a peace that is lasting today. no peace is 100%. there are always some trials and tribulations, but he laid the framework that is in place today. he left it for us to give oversight, if you will, and to ensure that people who have been in conflict, who desire to have peace can live in peace. further comments about ambassador holbrooke, we will remember his efforts of
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promoting peace and stability in our region with a deep sense of appreciation and gratitude, he will be remembered for his role in ending the vicious war in bosnia where his negotiating skills combined to drive through the dayton peace treaty agreement and put a halt to the fighting, british prime minister david cameron. as you can see from all walks of life, they poured out their comments of respect for again, america's peacemaker. he could always be counted on for his imagination, dedication and forcefulness, former secretary of state, madeleine albright. many understood his work, many who were in the business. more comments, richard holbrooke's legacy goes beyond
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the role he played in bringing a decade of fragile world of peace, welcoming a unified germany in an expanding nato and he leaves a vast multi-generational intercontinental network of friends. i say that again, he leaves a vast multi-generational intercontinental network of friends. you have touched people through generations and some are left with your spirit, inspiration and training. these words came from the president of the brookings institution, one who knows this system well. and then, of course, you had the fun stories about him. and one could not speak about him without saying how many different things he was.
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as was said in the "washington post," a writer, a diplomat,, he was a deeply serious man, engaged always in the serious business of saving lives in vietnam, afghanistan, bosnia and i will say at the united nations. yes, ambassador holbrooke, you were engaged in saving lives and to the end of your life, it was your pursuit to save lives. as i indicated, to the save the lives of our soldiers in afghanistan, to save the lives of women and children and families, to save the lives who simply want to go from marketplace to home, to farmers who want to take their goods from canada har to kabul and do something else other than poppy crops, he was -- as i reflect on my visits to
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afghanistan, when i reflect on how difficult, how challenging it is, i want to say to my colleagues, ambassador holbrooke could have sat in an armchair, done armchair diplomacy, in the technology, could have made attempts to communicate in some way other than the roll up your sleeves, get on an airplane and go to the harshest place, but he understood peace was about a people-to-people relationship. it was something that was special and he had a special touch. further words from a friends, dick holbrooke was a friend of mine. two days before he fell ill, i saw him and his devoted wife at a dinner where he proposed a toast with affection, self-depreciation and comic timing that made you think me missed his calling professionally. i liked him. i admired him much, much more.
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as you begin to reflect on ambassador holbrooke's life you have to admire him much, much more. that's from "time" magazine's international editor mikell yot. i'm sure we could account for so much twitter and blogging going on right now, the shock of losing this giant of a man, a man who exuded a desire for peace. but yet, he leaves a life of instruction. that if we are to really develop the kind of world that brings peace to all in the back drop of afghanistan and pakistan, the backdrop of the issues in the middle east and the backdrop of north and south korea, it has to be in quote the kind of hand-to-handy employee macy, insistent
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diplomacy, persistent, determined diplomacy and out of the box diplomacy. one of the champions of a unique new concept for pakistani americans and helping pakistan, and i was delighted to be able to engage with him on this and the secretary of state to go to the first inaugural meeting in new york and that is to develop a pakistan-american development board that would generate resources and development by pakistani americans and others. that is a love for the people. he knew he could start there because he knew in his interactions, he was not willing to label the entire pakistan with the frontier area and the unfortunate circumstances that causes pakistan to be in the way, if you will, of receiving
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terrorists running from afghanistan he knew the circumstance he knew the harshness of it. but he also knew that there were people every day in places throughout pakistan that wanted to go to school to open businesses, to be able to have a democratic government, a judicial system that worked and so he put the burden on the government of pakistan to say to them, i will work with you if you will work with me. he believed there could be a solution. he was excited about the pakistan development board and he was the heart and soul behind it. we had a great celebration in new york. it was his legacy. i will say to ambassador holbrooke, to his spirit and to his legacy, you've left something behind that can help create peace, that can network
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across the ocean between the good will people of america and pakistani americans and those in pakistan who really want to focus in on building a great nation, maybe in the spirit of their founding father, dr. jenner who believed in a democratic prospect, living harmoniously in bangladesh, india, pakistan, afghanistan in that region. so i want us to support the concept of his legacy. just let me read some headlines that are reflective of his history. strong american voice in diplomacy in crisis. i can affirm that. vietnam, afghanistan, pakistan, all resulted out of crisis. but he was a man of diplomacy. statesman. who defined a generation.
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clearly, 50 years of service, there was no doubt that ambassador holbrooke's life will be considered an era, a time frame of american diplomacy and an approach of getting involved and getting to know the people who you had to engage with. as we listen to reflections about ambassador holbrooke, it was noted that he would go to the sites of the chief or the elder statesmen or elder warrior or the village or the mountains to be able to draw from that very person who could be part of making peace. you know, as i reflect on this, i would say to you, that's the kind of diplomacy we need. we're going to have to unshackle ourselves. interest -- it's interesting as a member of the house foreign affairs committee, ambassador holbrooke in his astuteness paired before us, he was so carefully thinking and
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analyzing as he responded to questions but one thing that comes out of his life, one thing i gleaned as i had the privilege of representing the people of houston and the 18th congressional district, and seeing how the world works on their behalf, trying to be part of the solution, not the problem, people believe america can solve their problems. i know many americans push back on that and actually say we can't nation build and we can't solve anyone's problems and in the literal sense, they may be right. but if there's a perception that america has the answer that our democratic values are so strong that we can reach in times of peace or with peaceful tactics, help guide them toward peace, there's nothing wrong with that. i believe ambassador holbrooke truly believed that. that our values were so strong, that we could by sheer
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determination, commitment, and work help those people who could not help themselves. "time" magazine has richard holbrooke, an arch tipe of american -- an archetype of american diplomacy. there have been many career dip plo mats whose lives overlay the historical moments of the past half century, and they name a few. these are friends and rivals of holbrooke, who also played key roles and influenced events in ways we're still only beginning to learn. what made holbrooke most memorable? the article names a number of individuals. what lies behind the outpouring of mourning and reminiscing sweeping washington in the wake of his death monday evening was his personification of what many at home and abroad
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messenger u.s. diplomacy to be. i imagine what they're saying is that it was the hands on, get in your face, but come with a smile and tell you we can do this together, that's ambassador richard holbrooke he didn't pull in punches. i remember sitting in a meeting with him with pakistani americans and he answered hard questions and sometimes gave hard answers. but he left the room with friends and they truly believed he was looking for peace. in afghanistan and pakistan. holbrooke, this article goes on to say, was not just a prominent american dip plo -- diplomat who engaged in some of the most consequential events of this time, in the 15eu78 way shake peer's -- shakespeare's characters seem to live with us as the archetype for hero or
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villain, holbrooke is with us still, powerful, yet southerly per swace we've, occasionally offensive but tactically brilliant, sometimes heartlessly realistic but possessing high principles and real deep compassion. i just read that from "time" but as you have heard, my tribute, it's interesting how these words come from all of us. and as i indicated to you, if ambassador holbrooke's legacy is anything, it is in fact to leave us with that kind of road map. that's the kind of exciting diplomacy we must be engaged in. the world is not the same. it's not quiet. it's not two heads of state sit do you think quietly, breaking tea, coming to the room and signing the treaty. it's somebody hard moving, somebody that can be heartless
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but realistic. high principles. deep compassion. get in the way. thank you, ambassador holbrooke for leaving us with a road map and leaving us with your legacy. and challenges. because i don't know if the ambassador as he was working so diligently where he felt we were going in afghanistan. but i believe we must make a commitment in light of his spirit and the sacrifice for his family, friends, as he dedicated almost 100% of his time, unending, to finding a resolution and bringing people together. i would simply say that, president karzai, for the spirit in which you expressed your sympathy, i know that
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ambassador holbrooke would be so grateful for movement toward resolving this conflict, toward the ceasing of those who would move from afghanistan to take refuge and cover in pakistan. he would welcome the rising up of both governments to go against those acts of terror that were killing their people. he would welcome the resolve of those heads of state to continue fighting for peace and welcome the growth, development, and opportunity for the pakistani people and the people of afghanistan. he would welcome that. and i would simply say we owe this giant of a man that kind of tribute. words obviously are nice and nice to be heard.
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but i would hope that we would be most effective in carrying forth his legacy by actually putting to the test how we can resolve the conflict in afghanistan without a protracted extension but also to put the burden, the extra burden, of bringing peace on the government of afghanistan and its people, working with us, with that aggressive spirit, a can-do spirit that we can solve this, and yes, working with the people of pakistan. let me just relay a story and pictures and show you why this, again, hands-on diplomat was everywhere, meeting now with the president of pakistan and developing a relationship, a
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relationship that was tough but good and sincere. and i pay tribute to the pakistan government for the kind words they have said and i think the meaningful words, particularly the ambassador to the united states who has expressed from pakistan his deepest sympathy. here with president karzai often they were together and had frank and to-the-point conversation. you can't engage in hand-to-handy employee macy without being in place -- hand-to-hand diplomacy, without being in place to make them feel comfortable that you're working on their behalf. this is his early stages with president clinton who appointed him to the united nations. you can see that he moved around. and he was eager to be known as
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a person who, if we hot -- if he got the call, would come. let me share some of these live pictures with him. that have him and clearly speak to the action that ambassador holbrooke was. this looks to me like the pakistani flood when he was going into the camps, those horrific floods over the last couple of months that covered some 2/3 of pakistan, people were moved from their land, disastrous, devastating conditions, ambassador holbrooke did not miss an opportunity to go and to check, in this instance on children, and to see what we were doing. we were doing. here, you will see him not sitting in a traditional chair, but sitting with the people. and i speculate this is a
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meeting in afghanistan. here is a man and his child and ambassador holbrooke is not standing, not sitting in a chair as we know it, but he is with the people and he is engaging. this is the style, the diplomatic style of ambassador holbrooke. again, not in the comfort of the state department or any office building, but here he is with the military personnel, one of our battlefields and my speculation is that again, this is in afghanistan. reading again the people, letting them know that he cares and again, ambassador holbrooke on the move, meeting some of our allies, some of the coalition forces or the forces that worked along with the afghan forces.
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here he is again in the field shaking hands and indicating his interests. here with women, as he greets them, another out in the field, hands-on, ready to serve. meating with our military personnel, and again, always interacting and our ambassador to afghanistan, constantly being engaged, involving himself with the people and in the camps. here meeting with others who were in camp and being displaced, always working, always hands-on. we can heroin a lot from ambassador holbrooke and we can learn a lot from his never-say-never attitude and his willingness, if you will to
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ensure that the solution is his top priority. let me just remind you again of how early ambassador holbrooke started his career. he had a tremendous career with the united states state department and he actually begun with the response to president kennedy's call to service for government work in the early 1960's. he always had it in him. ambassador holbrooke was undoubtedly a public servant ever since he graduated from brown university in 1962, when he joined the foreign service and was sent to vietnam, a tough assignment. at the young age of 24, richard holbrooke, an expert on vietnam issues was appointed to the phoenix program under president johnson. ambassador holbrooke has been a champion of peace and democracy and this began at a young age with a profound dedication to
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the united states international diplomacy efforts. since beginning his career in foreign policy at such a young age, he obviously was at the forefront. at the 1968 peace talks, the director of the peace corps in morocco or as the editor of the foreign policy magazine, let me make that clear, he served as the director of the peace corps in that area in 1968. ambassador holbrooke has always been and resume shows how he has been consequential in some of the most treasure rouse areas. i was shocked, dismayed and saddened by the loss of ambassador richard holbrooke that we not fail to acknowledge
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his legacy in the hours after his passing for there are still people dying in afghanistan, civilians. still our soldiers on the front line. there are still terrorists, taliban hiding in the mountains of pakistan, allegations that osama bin laden is there as well, and so, we know that the world that ambassador holbrooke was so engaged in goes on. but we cannot allow it to go on without a pause for a moment to be able to say thank you to this giant of a man, bulldozer for america, america's peacemaker, but a credit to the world. and as i said in my earlier remarks, someone who loved this country and loved the ability to
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draw disaster and to draw nonbelievers out into the open and to make it right, to help the people in an disaster and to draw those nonbelievers into the circle of diplomacy to get them working on peace. that's what you are about, ambassador holbrooke. i'm glad to be able to call you acquaintance, friend and american hero with such a strong legacy. i know that this is a very sad time for so many. i rise on the floor this evening to be able again to offer my deepest sympathy for what i would also say is that we have so much to be thankful for, so much to study and read, so much to emulate, so much to be able to go on, so much to use,
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continuing effort for peace. we have got a road map left to us by ambassador richard holbrooke. and remember an earlier comment that if he asked you to do something, don't waste your time saying no, because more than likely, with a little pain you will be there saying yes. so why don't we keep his legacy ongoing, realize that he's asked us to continue to make peace. and as long as we fight against it, it's going to be painful. but if we can gather our thoughts together and we can continue to work together, to work with this administration, the president, the secretary of state and the congress and really realize that the important end game is peace in afghanistan and an independent peaceful independent pakistan and peaceful region but with the
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idea that people of those countries must take on that burden and really desire peace, maybe that's the message that they have gotten in this terrible tragedy to desire peace and to fight for it. if that is the case, then this hands-on, lively and well versed diplomat legacy will be embedded in the next days, hours, minutes, next couple of minutes when we might see a glimmer of sunshine reflecting the hands-on evidence of a man that never tired of seeking people to find peace. i hope that as we mourn the loss of ambassador richard holbrooke, that the tribute that we give to him that will be ongoing will be
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an unceasing quest for peace and i hope we will find it in his name on behalf of the fallen men and women who have given their lives in the united states military, on behalf of the people of the united states of america, we are indeed grateful for the service of ambassador holbrooke and we tell his family thank you for sharing him with the american people. i ask unanimous consent to submit into the record additional materials. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. jackson lee: with that, i humbly yield back my time in the name of peace and respect for ambassador richard holbrooke. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from texas yields back. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2009, the gentleman from missouri, mr. aiken, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the
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minority leader. mr. akin: it's a pleasure to join you and my colleagues this evening on a subject that has been of great concern to americans for a number of years and that is the subject of the economy and jobs. this ongoing discussion and debate is taking new turns here in the last few weeks and i think it's helpful and perhaps informtive to put that in perspective somewhat. and the thing we have to understand from the beginning is is that the whole question of the economy and jobs is owned right now by the democrats because that party has been driving the train for the last couple of years. the distinction between the parties has never been more sharp over the past two years because of the fact that you have had almost entirely party-line voting on major
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pieces of legislation after major pieces of legislation. when it came particularly to the stimulus, it was called the stimulus bill. some people called it the porkulous bill. that was a party-line vote along with a number of items on the agenda. what we have right now is the democrats running things for a couple of years and we have a recession going and the question is what are we going to do about the economy and about jobs. and there are two solutions to the problem and the ones that the democrats have proposed over the last couple of years have been very, very high level of federal spending and what they consider to be stimulus, which is more federal spending, which they think will fix the economy. for a couple of years i have been on the floor on wednesday evenings saying with all due respect, i don't think that
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solution will work. i'm not saying it won't work, but because prominent democrats have said it won't work and i have quoted henry morgenthau, f.d.r.'s treasurer and it was all the rage, if you get in trouble, spend a ton of economy and that will get the economy stimulated and you will pull right out of the recession. that's the theory. it has never worked. and after about eight years, henry morgenthau said, it won't work. we have tried spending and unemployment is as bass as it ever was and we have a huge deficit. it didn't work then and still hasn't worked the last couple of years. as we move forward into this discussion what are we going to do with the expiring tax cuts left over by the bush
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administration. it's important to understand where we are in context and the democrats have been making the call and they have been driving this equation and the economy and jobs has not turned around. we were told at the time of the stimulus bill that if we did not pass the bill that we could have as much as 8% unemployment. supposedly if we did pass the bill, the unemployment would be lower. we did pass the bill, unemployment jumped to 10% and those numbers are pretty conservative because people have been looking for a job and no longer count. many people have calculated. that's what's going on. now this is not complicated economics. if we are really serious about creating jobs, but there are two different party solutions.
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one is more bureaucracy and food stamps and the other is jobs and paychecks and that's america's choice and america chose in the november election to move towards the more jobs and paychecks and less bureaucrats and food stamps. but this is some of the spending we are talking about in the last couple of years. you just can't do this and not have it affect jobs. the wall street bailout, which some of it was supported by bush in the past but also by the obama administration and you have this stimulus bill, $787 billion, which was a total disaster and other items here and then the health care reform, which is the biggest of all, obamacare, $1 trillion. let's step back a little bit and go to things we know that works.
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anybody that have started a small businesses, you can go to main street anywhere in america and you could ask the people who run businesses what does it take to make jobs. it's not very complicated, but you will never be able to as the democrats tried to do, separate the employer from the employee. if you want jobs, you can't destroy the employer. if you destroy companies, you'll have less jobs, it's that simple. let's say you ask people on main street. what are the things you have to worry about in terms of destroying jobs of the the thing they are going to tell you first out of their mouths is excessive taxes. when you have too much taxes on business, they use their money to pay the taxes and don't use it to invest in new equipment, new processes, new r yarned d and various ways when they invest they create more jobs. so the first thing that is an
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animated job creation is first of all, excessive taxation. so what we have coming along now, and everybody has known it for years, that is these tax cuts are coming along, they're going to expire, it's going to be a massive tax increase. in fact, we have what, in a way, is a tax increase train wreck. you could think of it as the train is steaming along and everybody knows the bridge is out, the bridge is out on january 1, 2011, the tax cuts expire, and what happens then, america receives the largest tax increase in the history of the nation. now that is very bad medicine for an already sick economy. there's no surprise about this. everybody has known these tax cuts are going to expire and there's going to be a whopping
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big tax increase and somebody has to do something about it. now we're waiting until the last couple of weeks of december to try to deal with this problem. that's not particularly responsible, i suppose. what is it when you go to main street and ask businesses what is it that kills jobs? first thing is, major heavy taxes on businesses and on entrepreneurs and on the people that run businesses. that's the first killer of jobs. now we're doing thaw in -- that in spades. we're doing a lot of that. if these massive tax increases come along, it makes it a whole lot worse. what's the next thing businesses would talk about that would kill jobs? it's something else that eats into their profits. a whole lot of red tape and government paperwork. so how are we doing in that department? well, one of the big bills that the obama administration democrats wanted to push, cap and tax. tax and tremendous amount of
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new red tape and bureaucracy to prevent global warming. if you believe in the theory of global warming, one of the things it says is it's bad to create co-2. an honest attempt to stop global warming would say, we probably need to stop burning as much carbon in any form and move to some other source of energy generation, which suggests nuclear. and if you were to take the number of nuclear power plants in america and double them, you would in effect get rid of the same amount, you did that, of all the co-2 produced by every passenger car in america. the bill doesn't do that. the bill created instead more taxes, which again kill jobs, and second of all a tremendous amount of red tape. now that bill didn't pass because of the fact that even some of the liberals thought this didn't make a whole lot of sense. instead, the obama administration said, what we're going to do is just implement it through rules and
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regulations. what does rules and regulations mean? in street language a whole lot of red tape. what does that mean to businesses? it means less jobs. it means it prevents jobs from being created or kills jobs that are already there because the red tape costs them overhead to have to deal with it and the increase in vol qume in red tape makes americans less competitive which shifts jobs overseas. the second thing after a whole love of taxes that makes it hard on jobs is too much red tape. unfortunately, we're doing that as well. then you've got a whole series of other things too that are all contributing to this excessive jobs, loss of job, and that's going to be uncertainty. now, one of the things the way businesses operate if you don't know what the future is going to be, you're going to be careful about taking any risks or making any investment in new equipment or new processes or new technology which is going
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to create jobs. so uncertainty is the third big enemy of job creation. how are we doing in uncertainty. what's being talked about is as a way of stopping this massive tax increase is simply kicking the can down the road somewhere between a year and two years. so does that help any in terms of uncertainty? people argue, is the glass half full or half empty? it seems to avert the train wreck but it's like you've got a train about to go off a bridge that's out and you build a couple more spans of track further out but the track still ends. and so i suppose you avert a problem but on the other hand, from an uncertainty point of view it creates uncertainty if you're wanting to know how to do estate planning in terms of the death tax, to know that the thing is going to be extended with additional coverage up to $5 million and cover 35% tax
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rate, but you know that's only going to happen in two years that doesn't happen a lot in estate planning. it may help a year or two but still leaves a question mark. not only is the death tax a question mark, but capital gains and dividends. another thing it takes time to plan for is a question mark. is it better than having the train go off the cliff? perhaps, but it still does not solve one of the things that makes it hard to create jobs, that is if you've got a lot of uncertainty. this may increase but it doesn't help the high level of uncertainty that's coming along. in fact, it's been argued in the wall street -- in the "wall street journal." -- in the "wall street journal," that the tax policy now, because there's so many different parts of it that are part of this deal that's been struck, you almost create more uncertainty because there's no definitive final solution, what are we going to do. what is federal policy on the
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death tax? are we going to tax people after they die? one more tax to get them, after we tax them all their life, the money they saved they didn't get taxed on, we're going to get it again a second time or third time. the uncertainty is a big factor in jobs. the next one is liquidity, which we again have not done a good job with. liquidity is a business owner may want to go to a bank and get a loan. typically those loans are negotiated on about a five-year basis. they pay a pretty good interest rate because the banker is taking some risk, so the banker, if things go well does well with it. on the other hand if the small business struggles or fails, the banker is caught too. there's the question of liquidity. do small businesses have liquidity they need to move toward? with the new banking regulations, you have federal bureaucrats all over the banks saying, i don't think that's a good loan you've made to joe blow over there so the federal
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government is second-guessing what the banks do and requiring the banks to have much higher percents -- higher interest rates but also higher percent of collateral from anybody that buys money. that makes liquidity more difficult, makes job creation more difficult. the last thing of the five things you will hear when you go to main street and ask a business owner what are the things that make it thoord create jobs, they're going to say federal spending. federal spending just absorbs money out of the economy and makes it so the businesses are are starving. if you starve businesses then you're going to starve jobs. you cannot disconnect the business from the jobs that it creates. if you're going to get a job, you're going to work for an employer. it sounds not very complicated yet somehow, here in congress, we seem to forget, the democrats seem to make the disconnect on those things. so these are all policies that have been set up by the u.s. congress.
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it's not a surprise that there's unemployment going on because we're violating all five of these basic principles of job creation. and so then the debate comes, what are we going to do about the taxes that are expiring? we've had a number of years to think about it but nobody wanted to do anything. now after the lech we're starting to say, this really may be a problem. and the president, because the buck stops with him to a large degree, has been the first to actnology, -- acknowledge, with the democrat groups between reid, pelosi and the president, the president is saying, we better do something about this, if nothing else, whether he's seen the light, at least he felt the heat in the november elections. so the question then is, you've got this pattern of all five of these things being wrong, the taxes, the red tape, the uncertainty, the liquidity problems with the banks, all these things are done the wrong way. so the republicans, because
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things have been so polarized, we voted no on all this stuff, it's quite clear that there is this sharp contrast between what we're going to do now, the contrast becomes more blurred with the proposal of trying to do something at the last minute with the bush tax cuts, so we're going to take a look at that in a minute and what is the nature of those tax cuts and what was the effect when the tax cuts went into effect? so moving along, we continue to see the deficit under the democrat budgets. there was a lot of talk that the republicans under bush overspent and it's true that the republicans did overspend. you can take a look at some of these 2002, you had a $400 billion debt here, it went down until we get to 2008, this was still -- this is under speaker pelosi's congress, but you had
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$459 billion when bush was president of deficit and a lot of people objected to that and said that's terrible. we're going to change these elections around, we're going to elect a different president, etc., etc. so these were the bush years and now look all of a sudden here, you get to 2009 with obama and you've got these trillion-dollar deficits which are three times the very worst that bush ever had. so we're talking about a level of spending that's unprecedented. so when we use the term, on this chart, stupendous spending, it's unlike anything we've seen before, it makes george bush look like a -- like some sort of a scotch presbyterian or something because he's not spending at all here and that results in unemployment. i've been critical of the
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democrat policies because historically and economically they're going to create unemployment. they've done that. so the question is, you want more bureaucrats and food stamps? or do you want jobs and paychecks? that's what america has to answer. what's the solution to this? and the -- one of the proposals is to not let these tax cuts expire. then the question becomes, then, doesn't that add to the deficit? part of it does, part of it doesn't. that's kind of the interesting thing that goes on here. if you continue to pay people for not working, which is extending unemployment and certainly because there is a high level of unemployment, that's appealing. but the problem is, the unemployment is created by those terrible policies of too much taxes, too much federal spending, the uncertainty and liquidity and those other component parts. so here's the solution to some degree. that is, when you cut taxes, in
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fact, what happens is, you don't build the deficit you reduce the deficit. how can that be? if you cut taxes, it means the government gets less money, doesn't it? if the government gets less money and keeps spending at the same rate, doesn't that mean you have more and more deficits? the answer is no. because of a very interesting effect that was first made public, i suppose, by an economist by the name of laver -- of laffer. he was a clever fellow, he was an economist under the days of ronald reagan, and what he's shone is this red line is the rate of the total federal tax -- the blue lines are total federal tax receipts in dollars. this is the top margal income tax here of going from all the way up at 90%, dropping way down. as the top margal rate, the rate on all these supposedly rich people who, by the way,
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the rich people are the ones a lot of them own those businesses that create the jobs. if you tax them into the dirt, what happens to the jobs? you won't have jobs. you broke the code. if you want jobs, you have to allow some people to keep some of their wealth and reinvest in their business. what laffer is saying here, as we dropped historically, we drop this top tax rate. take a look at what happens to the total tax receipts of the federal government. the tax receipts are going up. doesn't that seem counterintuitive? doesn't that seem as though you're making water run uphill? the answer is, no it's not. here's a simple way to try to understand it. it helps cast light on the votes that are coming up here later this week and perhaps even the week of christmas, there has been certainly the threat that we'll come in on christmas week, maybe new year's week as well. it's interesting that we couldn't get our business done so we're going to try to jam it all in at the last minute.
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it's also interesting to see what the real priorities are. but so then, what's this say? well, for instance, let's say that you are made king for a day. or king for a year. and your job is to try to raise as much revenue for your kingdom as you can so you can run your government. and you -- you're allowed to do one thing. you can tax a loaf of bread. you start thinking and contemplating and say to yourself, if i were to charge one penny tax on every loaf of bread and there's millions of loaves that are sold, we'd raise some money. money. and you say instead of a penny, what happens if i charge $10 for bread. that would make a difference. $10, you would get much more but then nobody would buy any bread if you put $10 tax on it. and you think there is something

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